Wow, it’s been a while since I’ve had a raw pu-erh. I meant to do a bunch of gongfu steeps and dump them all in a big travel mug (Fellow Carter Move, love travel mugs with the ceramic lining!), but sniff and taste each steep before it went into the mug so it still felt like gongfu and I could see the differences between steeps and stuff. The big mug of tea was so I could have something hot and tasty to drink while working on a baby blanket for my on-the-way niece (? I only have a two-year-old’s word that it’s a girl). The steeping went according to plan and tea made it into the mug but then I fell asleep. I don’t know what it is about raw pu-erh that makes me sleepier than most other teas. The few sips from tasting each steep and drinking the last bit of a steep that wouldn’t quite fit in my mug knocked me out. It was pretty late at that point, but still. Luckily, the Fellow mug is more like a thermos than a regular travel mug and my tea was still hot and enjoyable today.

Dry leaf kinda just smelled like raw pu-erh to me. Like slightly spicy hay or something. I love that they double wrapped the cake even though it’s a tiny one. I think all tea cakes should be double wrapped or at least wrapped with the thicker type of paper. I’m always worried about destroying the wrapper way before the tea is gone when I get a huge cake wrapped in one layer of that thin tissue paper type paper. I also appreciated that this cake wasn’t super tightly pressed so I was able to gently pick out leaves with my nails instead of hunting down my tea pick. Did I measure my leaf? Probably should have, but no. I think I was on the lighter side leaf-wise but I’m a bit out of practice and this was my first time with this tea. Brewed tea has the sort of spice aroma and flavor that can be hit or miss with me. I can never pinpoint exactly what kind of spice(s), there’s just something that seems spice-like to me. Maybe a teeny bit of citrus. Bitterness comes out more as it cools. Empty cup smelled exactly like honey, which was kind of weird. Aftertaste is sort of lemon honey. This needs a proper gongfu session but I suspect this is one that will not play nice with my stomach with more leaf.

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I may have a mild to moderate tea addiction. Black, white, green, pu-erh, it doesn’t matter. I’m a little on the fence about oolongs but I’m starting to think I’m just particular about how they’re brewed. I haven’t tried any yellows yet but they’re on my wishlist so I can have a complete rainbow of tea. My tea problem is bad enough that I don’t necessarily even need tea in my tea, most herbals are welcome in my house too.

Favorites: jasmine, moonlight white, shou mei, chenpi/tangerine peel, violet, rose, Mengku sheng (especially autumn), anji bai cha, taiping houkui, blooming tea balls, tulsi/holy basil, chamomile

Dislikes: red rooibos, eucalyptus, allspice, flavorings of unknown origin, pumpkin, apple, banana, annoying flower petals that don’t add any flavor but are thrown in to look pretty (they tend to float and get in my way if I brew tea grandpa style)


Montana, USA

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